Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Variations on a Tee #3: Sweetheart

 Sweetheart Tee Thumbnail





Lace is big right now.  Using a lace inset rather than allover lace is a nice way to dip a toe into the trend, as in this Valentino point d'esprit and jersey top ($790).




If you do go whole hog, there is the issue of lace being transparent.  You can fully underline or go for a sweetheart look, as in this Milly Chantilly Lace Caterina Top ($275).








Or you can combine the lace and sweetheart trends, as I did with these projects.  An upper lace yoke is a more common look, but it can also be reversed as in this Love Moschino Lace Sweetheart Jersey Dress ($324.51.

Pattern










I drafted this from my t-shirt block, but McCall 6435 has since been released if you don't want to draft (I made the black top in mid-December).  As you can see, on my first try I made the sweetheart too flat and it was not covering my bra, so err on the side of curvy.


Pink Back
The back is just cut straight across.  The biggest decision I had to make was whether to cut the yoke above or below the armscye.  I looked at a bunch of pieces online and it seems to be done both ways.  I decided to cut it under the arm as I thought it looked a bit more luxe.


Sweetheart Seam Allowance
The black version, made of a sturdy poly/lycra ($6.99/yd from Uptown Fabrics on eBay) and a piece of embellished netting from the fabric swap at the PR DC meetup, I sewed entirely with the serger, wanting to minimize seam allowances.  I should note in response to Dilly's comment that I first sewed the sweetheart point with the regular sewing machine and then used the serger to stitch and trim very close to that original stitching; I don't have the skill to achieve a clean point using the serger on the first pass.

The pink version is made of a bamboo rayon from Fabric Mart ($6.99/yd), which I bought in 2009.  I was pretty disappointed with the flabbiness of the knit so it has been in stash for quite a while (I made a nightgown out of some of it).  I was concerned about the bulk of a serger seam on the sweetheart of the rayon, so I stitched it by machine.  I trimmed the yoke's seam allowance and then turned both seam allowances up and hand-stitched only to the underlining of the yoke to keep the stitches invisible.  In a beefier knit, I would just serge.

Sleeve Lace
I finished the neckline of the black version with fold-over elastic--my first successful application!  I found a two-step process was necessary, rather than trying to sandwich.

I went a little trim crazy on the pink version.  I used the flutter sleeve from Burda 03-2008-113.  I've never actually made the pattern but I used the sleeve before on my Vogue 8379 wrap dress.  I used a zigzag stitch to sew narrow stretch lace from Sew Sassy to the (raw) edges from the inside, making sure that the lace peeked over just a little, pink thread in the top and white thread in the bobbin.  Then I switched the thread and zigzagged again from the right side close to the inner edge of the lace.
Neckline Finish

For the neckline I used a fancy picot elastic ($0.90/yd) I got from Steinlauf and Stoller the last time I was in New York.  I thought it might be too much, but in the end I preferred the look to a twin needle finish.

Black Front
Pink Closeup
This is a fun, easy t-shirt variation that is on-trend at the moment.

You can make the upper part sheer, as with my black version, which I wore to several holiday parties (be sure to wear a bra with nice straps!), or do it for day with an underlay as in my pink version, or reverse the lace as in the Moschino above, or do it as colorblocking.  It's a surprisingly versatile pattern!

All photos are here and the pattern review is here.

38 comments:

T. Sedai said...

Cute! I love both versions, but the black is especially eye-catching. Apparently I really have a thing for lace... and now I really want to use some of it!

Karen said...

I love both of these! Especially the black with the long sleeves.

Karin said...

Both are great, but I really love the black one. Stunning and comfortable!

I've been away, but I did read back through the posts I missed. I like your assessment of the wedding dress. The girl forgot to consider "product development" and the logistics of getting it to her, retailing, etc.

I wonder if the era of cheaper and cheaper clothes is about to end? Surely workers in China will eventually demand some leisure and perks in life that we all enjoy.

puu said...

great work and even better inspiration. thanks for sharing!

Seraphinalina said...

Both versions are really lovely. I think the pink one really wears the trim well, it's not too much at all. The black version is super sexy, I can see how it would work well for holiday parties.

Cennetta said...

Love them. The black one is oh so elegant. Both are very flattering on you.

Far said...

:) Both are awesome, but for me I especially love the pink version on you! :) The flutter sleeves and how you use the trims! Great job!

Kris C. said...

I think the flutter sleeves on the pink top are really cute. But the black top - oh, my! Gorgeous!

Donna said...

I really like both versions too - yay for day and night variations!

Rosie said...

Love both versions! Well done!

Sarah B said...

Super cute! I especially love the pink version, although the black one is very lovely as well. Now I am eager to try this myself :o)

CGCouture said...

I like both versions, but the black one has me drooling! I hope you plan to share your two step process for FOE. I usually just triple zig-zag it, but after washing the item of clothing I'll discover a spot that didn't get caught (at least with the narrow stuff). Does it make it bulkier to sew it twice?

Little Hunting Creek said...

Love both tops, but the black one is my favorite. I'm working on two lace tops right now. But they aren't black - now I need a black one!

sewing spots said...

They are both beautiful and very inspiring! Thanks for sharing!

Sara Noemi said...

Both tops are lovely! I'm definitely going to add lace to my to-sew list now!

Nettie said...

So, cute!! I love the peachy version the most. I like the addition of the fluttery, girly sleeves.

liza jane said...

I like the pink version a lot. I love how you are wearing it with the belt. I have a thing for flutter sleeves right now, too.

Sigrid said...

Lovely tops, winners!

Faye Lewis said...

I love both, but the black one is soooo cool!

Carol said...

What a brilliant idea! Thank you for the inspiration. I have some stretch lace in my stash that I didn't know what to do with.

SEWN said...

I love lOVE the black lace t. So sexy!

knitmachinequeen (KMQ) said...

The black is my fav. TFS

Adelaide B said...

These are great! It's fun watching you delve into pattern drafting.

thornberry said...

Trena, I love what you make! Both these tops look terrific. Great pattern drafting too - your construction pics are really helpful. I tend to be really lazy and just buy patterns rather than altering ones I already have to get new looks, so you're inspiring me to stop being so lazy and just get out some paper, trace things off, and draft away!

lakaribane said...

I think the black lace is my favorite. I'm inching my way towards a TNT, mentally for now. But you make a good case for it.

emadethis said...

I'm having a hard time getting lace off the brain myself. I have a piece of stretch lace in the stash that wants to be dealt with, but there's so many options! That Valentino tee dumbfounds me every time I see it, it's so pretty. I really like the idea of using the lace for a yoke. It looks so elegant in the black.

velosewer said...

I've thought about this method so I'm really thankful you've done this and done an excellent job. Both versions are stunning and suit you to a T :-)

Lisette M said...

Love them both! You are always ahead of the pattern trend!

Mikhaela said...

Love this--both versions are awesome but I'm particularly loving the pink fluttery number.

June said...

I'm ga-ga for the black lace and sequins! That's awesome!

Dilly said...

I absolutely adore this look, and both versions look amazing on you. I can't decide which version I like better! I'm currently working on a dress with a full lace overlay, so I think there is lace on many brains at the moment.

A question about the construction on the black top... How did you get the sharp "v" in the front with the serger? Did you sew it in two goes as opposed to turning this corner? (if that makes sense!).

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Dilly, good question. I should have noted that I first sewed the sweetheart point on the black version with the regular sewing machine and then used the serger to stitch and trim very close to that original stitching; I don't have the skill to achieve a clean point using the serger on the first pass. I've edited the post to reflect that.

McVal said...

Love those! The black is especially striking!

Mrs. Micawber said...

And I thought you inserted those lovely black straps into the t-shirt somehow! It's a knockout either way, and the coral one is so feminine.

ana5059 said...

Pink top is beautiful!

MushyWear said...

You have done an amazing job with both these t-shirts. I love how delicate and romantic the pink one is, and I can see why the black one was a great choice for holiday parties. Very inspiring!

Linda, Bathtub Fabric Queen said...

I like your versions much better than the designer versions! I'm not a huge lace kinda gal (maybe because my mother used to make me wear it as a kid). BUT I do have 2 pieces of lace enstashee, and you've inspired me to try to do something with them (or at least 1 of them). I love the black top!

Dilly said...

Ah, cool, sewing on the regular machine first hadn't occurred to me - doh! Thanks for answering my question Trena :)